January 25, 2003
New Voice in Magical Realism
Blackberries in the Dream House, the forbidden love story of a geisha and a Buddhist monk in Kyoto, Japan 150 years ago, introduces a new voice in American Prose Fiction. The author is an award-winning poet, and her novel is deeply feminine, erotic and metaphysical. Blackberries has the intrigue of Memoirs of a Geisha but is set in an older, artistically flowering Japan. Because of the beauty and power of its language, Blackberries has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.
Pierre DeLattre, author of Walking on Air and Tales of a Dalai Lama, describes the book like this:
"What would happen to us if we were to undertake the discipline of turning our life entirely and self-consciously into a poem? Through Yukiko, who becomes both a contemplative Buddhist and a geisha skilled in the refinements of sensuous pleasure, Diane Frank allows us to live within the soul of a young woman who has undertaken to create a life imagined and expressed as a poem, in every moment, waking and sleeping, making love or meditating. With its power of language, Blackberries in the Dream House will seduce many readers into considering whether a prosaic life is the only choice we have."
The author researched her novel in the geisha districts of Kyoto, but added her own unique artistic flair in the genre of magical realism. The exotic story appeals to even those who are not literary types. Seduced by the beautiful language, readers will come to realize the sacredness of both the sensual and the spiritual within themselves.
Diane Frank is author of The Winter Life of Shooting Stars, The All Night Yemenite Café, and editor of three anthologies of visionary poetry. Her friends describe her as a harem of seven women in one very small body. She has mentored hundreds of writers at San Francisco State University, City College of San Francisco, and the Professional Writing Program at MIU in Iowa. She is also a documentary scriptwriter with expertise in Eastern and sacred art.
Books are available at bookstores everywhere.